Replacing a leaking roof,can be extremely expensive, and so it is wise to maintain rooves
to extend their life.
There are a number of reasons that can cause a roof to spring a leak, especially if there
has been faulty instalation. If caught early though, most roof problems can be dealt with by
I have listed below a number of ways of dealing with a leaking roof.
Safety - has to be the highest priority when it comes to planning roof
- If you are intending to complete the repairs yourself, it is important to research safe
methods of working at heights.
- If you intend to employ someone to complete the repairs to your leaking roof, ensure that
you employ qualified tradesmen.
Be aware that any savings made by doing the work yourself could easily be eaten up if you injure
yourself or cause more damage through inexperience.
Check out How to use ladders
page on Springcleantips.com for tips on how to climb up to inspect a roof.
Fitness - It is important to be realistic about your physical capabilities and
only undertake this type of repair if you are fit enough to climb up on to a roof.
Inspection - It could be that you are capable to inspect the roof and therefore to
assess the extent of the repair needed, rather than accepting blindly the report of a prospective
Nowadays it is possible to make use of small video camera's mounted on telescopic poles to
inspect rooves and gutters from the safety of the ground.
Leak identification -
External -One method is to spray your roof with water from a hose to identify
where the leak is coming from. Whilst doing this you could wash the roof and remove any moss or
debris to help the search for the source of the leak.
Always allow the roof to dry if you are intending to walk on it.
The area's to inspect are :-
Ridge tiles - Are there any missing? Is the cement pointing all in place?
Is it begining to perish?
Roof tiles - Are there any missing? Are any cracked or broken, or out of
Gulleys - Are they free from any debris? Is the cement pointing all in place?
Is it begining to crack or perish?
Chimneys - Is the pointing between the bricks in good condition? Are the pots
or cowls properly cemented in place?
Apex - Are the edging tiles properly capped or cemented in place?
Gutters - Are they clear of all debris? Is there sufficient fall (gradient) for
the rain water to run to the downpipes?
Are all the joints properly connected and leak free? A tell tale sign is moss or green slime
around the joints and discolouration on the wall underneath.
Are the downpipes free flowing? Again a tell tale sign can be small plants growing from the top
of them. These tend to be the main areas where gutters block up.
Always keep gutters clean and free from debris, as clogged gutters can contribute to
rotting and breakage of the roof tiles closest to the edges and of barge boards and soffits
This can also contribute to mold or mildew outbreaks which can spread
and cause other tiles to become vulnerable, and exposing your family and pets to
airborne spores that can cause health issues.
Are there signs of birds nesting in the gutters or under the tiles?
Check out the Gutter cleaning
pages on springcleantips.com for more in depth advice.
If you see evidence of dry rot in the barge boards or soffits, address this issue
before it gets worse. Dry rot will never just "go away" on its own.
If this is not something you are knowledgeable about yourself, either consult a
professional or hire one to fix the problem for you.
Internal - To check a Leaking Roof from the inside you will need to get up into
the attic area.
Do this during day light so that once up there you can look for any areas where tiles are
out of place or roofing felt that has perished.
Take a torch up with you and watch your step if the attic is not boarded out.
Winter problems - If you live in a region that suffers from really cold
winters, do not allow ice to build up on your roof.
This can weigh heavily on the tiles as well as on the underneath beams, making the entire
roof structure vulnerable and considerably reducing its lifespan.
In a similar way, remove excess snow from your roof, to protect the roof and anyone passing
Use protective coatings prior to the onset of bad weather, and use de-icing sprays and products
to remove ice before it has a chance to build up.
Preventive maintenance and quick response to small problems will help you avoid larger
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